A couple months ago I wrote two articles about FOX Sports and their sexist, demeaning, and objectifying marketing strategies. Nothing has changed since then, and I’m tired of it.
That’s where you all come in. I started a Change.org petition to get their attention and need as much support as possible. With enough signatures I know we can get them to pay attention to us.
Please help spread the word and sign the petition! Let’s make sports a safe place for women to be treated with respect and as fans; not as eye candy.
Sign the petition here.
From the Petition:
The world of sports already has a long tradition of exploiting women’s bodies as a way to increase male interest; FOX Sports doesn’t need to add to or validate this practice. The “FOX Sports Girls” campaign and the “Babes” section of their website does just this.
The FOX Sports Girls campaign is active in multiple cities across the country. Each city uses two young, attractive women who have nothing to do with sports and nothing to contribute but their looks and claims they are “fan ambassadors.” But, they’re not called “fan ambassadors;” they’re called “girls.” It is obvious that their value to FOX is not in their ability to be ambassadors, but in their appearance, their sexuality, and their appeal to men. Women who are sports fans constantly have to fight to be accepted as true fans and not as eye candy for men. Having this campaign only perpetuates the idea that a girl/woman’s place in sports is to be pleasing and entertaining for the male players and fans.
A message that’s only compounded by the Babes section of the FOX Sports website. Ultimately, the FOX Sports website is a sports website. Its purpose is to relay information and news about sports. When a website with this purpose is paired with a section called “Babes” it creates an association between sports and women that is based on women as sexual objects, not women as people. When women try to enter the world of sports as actual people who don’t want to be defined by their sexuality, sites like this make it almost impossible.
It also exploits and demeans women’s sexuality. Sites like this use women’s sexuality to sell a product that has nothing to do with women’s sexuality. It is different than a site like Victoria’s Secret or Frederick’s of Hollywood using sexualized women to sell their products; this behavior makes sense because their products are actually about women being sexy. When we use women’s sexuality to sell things that are completely unrelated, it is dangerous; female sexuality becomes a thing to be used for other means, not a thing to be valued for itself. This is one of the ways we can live in a society that constantly sexualizes women but still calls women that enjoy sex and have a lot of it, sluts and whores. We have fundamentally separated women’s sexuality from women’s own sexual pleasure.
While FOX Sports is merely part of a larger system that perpetuates this kind of message about women’s bodies and sexualities, it is one of the largest sports networks in the country and has a substantial amount of power, reach, and influence. It can either send a powerful message that demeaning women in this way has no place in sports (or anywhere else) by terminating the FOX Sports Girls campaign and getting rid of the Babes section of their website, or it can continue to validate and contribute to this practice. I urge them to do the former, and hope you will to.